Setting up Helm

Helm, the package manager for Kubernetes, is a useful tool for: installing, upgrading and managing applications on a Kubernetes cluster. Helm packages are called charts. We will be installing and managing JupyterHub on our Kubernetes cluster using a Helm chart.

Charts are abstractions describing how to install packages onto a Kubernetes cluster. When a chart is deployed, it works as a templating engine to populate multiple yaml files for package dependencies with the required variables, and then runs kubectl apply to apply the configuration to the resource and install the package.


If you previously installed Z2JH using Helm 2, it is worth noting that Helm 3 includes several major breaking changes. See the Helm 3 FAQ for more information.

For migrating from Helm v2 to v3, checkout the official Helm guide.


While several methods to install Helm exist, the simplest way to install Helm is to run Helm’s installer script in a terminal:

curl | bash
  • The minimum supported version of Helm in Z2JH is 3.2.0.

  • Helm 3 uses the same security mechanisms as other Kubernetes clients such as kubectl.


You can verify that it is installed properly by running:

helm list

You should see an empty list since no Helm charts have been installed:


Next Step

Congratulations, Helm is now set up! Let’s continue with Setup JupyterHub!